As today is International Women’s Day, our director Carmen Mendoza-Arroyo and student Phyllis Tsang, took the chance to share their thoughts on women working in the humanitarian field. We believe that women’s rights should be defended everyday:

As director to this program, it is great to have an all women cohort this year, because it means there will be  more women In the humanitarian sector, and therefore,  more women in crisis situations that will have an architect or engineer or just a peer of their same gender  to help and understand them. 

The humanitarian sector is changing but very slowly regarding gender balance. For  example it is wonderful to see women directing some agencies of the Cluster, as they will probably implement changes. 

As an academic, I still come across all male panels, jury’s, courses with frustration and more so when I have to constantly remind colleagues that  it is not a matter of quotas it is a matter of including a different experience  and perspective, one which represents   50 percent pf the worlds population. 

On a day like today it is important to remember that our fight towards gender equality  is not over and that we must strive to make a difference in every aspect of our lives!

Carmen Mendoza Arroyo
Director at MICSEA

Being a female humanitarian in the field gives me the privilege of being face-to-face with women and girls from cultures where women are rarely assigned leadership roles and are often placed on an unequal footing compared with the male siblings or counterparts. Even though today’s media gives them access to countless awe-inspiring female role models, being right in front of them brings home the message that even ordinary women can do extraordinary things.

WY Phyllis Tsang
Student at MICSEA (2022-2023)

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